Smoking will be banned as part of a clean-up program that has collected 140,000 cigarette butts from a distance of 2.5 kilometers on Patong Beach in Phuket.
Smoking on 20 of Thailand’s most famous beaches will be sanctioned with a fine of $ 3,000 or up to one year in prison, with the ban coming into effect in November, AFP.com informs. The entry into force of the ban coincides with the peak of the summer season in Thailand. This will be valid in destinations that attract a large number of tourists such as Krabi, Koh Samui, Pattaya, Phuket and Phang Nga. “These beaches are among the most beautiful in South Asia, and the goal is to keep them that way,” said Yuthasak Supasorn, governor of the Tourism Authority of Thailand. He added that smokers will have to use specially designed areas where they can throw cigarette butts. Tourism is an extremely important pillar in Thailand’s economy, with more than 30 million tourists annually. Thailand is struggling to fight charges on weak safety standards after visitors have made numerous complaints that they are demanding exaggerated prices and are not well protected in boats and jets.